Common Types of Truck Accidents

Rear-End Collisions, Rollovers, Jackknife Crashes and More

Each truck accident is a unique situation with different factors involved. But there are common types of crashes. While each is different, all types can cause serious injury.

Common types of truck crashes include:

Michael D. Christensen Law Offices has been helping the victims of truck accidents in greater Columbus for 15 years. If you've been hurt in any of the types of truck accidents listed on this page, contact us today to learn how we can fight the insurance and trucking companies to get compensation for your injuries. Don't see your truck accident type? Don't hesitate to call us and describe your accident. You may be entitled to compensation.

What should I know about rear-end truck accidents?

Large trucks traveling at high speeds are not easy to stop. They have brakes, but all truck brakes have limitations.

The heavier a truck is, the more distance is needed before braking brings the truck to a halt. An 80,000-pound tractor-trailer traveling at 65 mph in ideal conditions needs 525 feet to come to a complete stop.

Truck drivers who follow behind other vehicles too closely pose a danger on the road. If the vehicle in front needs to stop suddenly, the truck will not be able to stop before crashing into it. This can cause terrible damage and leave the driver of the other vehicle seriously injured.

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What are rollover accidents?

This is a common type of truck accident. In these types of crashes, something causes the wheels of the truck to lift off the road. The truck rolls over to its side or even rolls upside-down.

Trucks may roll over due to:

  • traveling at a high speed
  • sudden changes in steering
  • improperly balanced cargo
  • hitting an obstacle in the road

A truck that rolls over could fall on top of or slide into a car, or many cars. This can result in serious injuries for the drivers and passengers.

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What is a jackknife truck accident?

This type of accident happens when the drive axle brakes of a tractor-trailer lock up. This causes the trailer to skid.

The trailer then swings outward before stopping. This leaves the trailer and cab at an angle that looks similar to a jackknife. A truck may also roll over after it jackknifes.

When the trailer swings out, it can hit cars traveling in the other lane. This can have tragic consequences, especially on a highway where vehicles are traveling at high speeds.

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Was I involved in an underride truck accident?

This type of accident happens after a rear-end collision. It involves a tractor-trailer and a car, or other smaller vehicle.

An underride accident happens when a car is behind a tractor-trailer whose driver slams on the brakes. The car hits the rear trailer. Because of the force of impact and the size differences of the two vehicles, the car then goes underneath the rear trailer.

Drivers and passengers can be seriously hurt in underride accidents. Head injuries are common in these types of crashes.

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Did my truck accident involve brake failure?

It's possible. When a truck's air brakes fail, the driver is unable to stop the truck and may crash into another vehicle. This situation is even more dangerous if the truck is going downhill when the brakes fail.

Why would the brakes fail? The driver could have used improper braking techniques, which wore down the brakes faster than normal. Other possible explanations are poor maintenance, improper installation or the age of the brakes.

An accident investigation can determine if the air brakes on the truck were faulty. If they were, this could be a case in which the trucking company could be held responsible.

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What is a no zone truck accident?

A "no zone" is the blind spot of a truck. Large trucks have large blind spots-if a car is in one of those spots, the truck driver won't be able to see it. In general, if you can't see the driver of a truck in the truck's side mirror, the driver can't see you.

All drivers should be aware of the blind spots on a truck. However, it is the truck driver's responsibility to look carefully for other vehicles leaving or entering those blind spots before changing lanes or speed.

If a truck driver is inattentive and makes a lane change, the truck could crash into a car in the blind spot. And when a large truck hits a smaller car, it could lead to serious injury.

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